A Sutter County sheriff’s deputy was killed late Wednesday, the apparent victim of a drunken driving collision near Smartsville.
Rory Roguski, of Yuba City, was pronounced dead at the scene, the CHP said in a press release.
“This is a horrible tragedy,” Sheriff J. Paul Parker said Thursday. “The department is just stunned by it.”
Roguski, 25, was a passenger in a 1999 Ford Mustang driven by Erin Marie Jasper of Oregon House.
CHP Officer Jodie Beck said Jasper and Roguski had been dating.
Jasper, 26, was arrested on suspicion of vehicular manslaughter and felony DUI. She was taken by air ambulance to Sutter Roseville Medical Center, the CHP said. The CHP initially reported Jasper’s injuries as minor but later described them as moderate.
“She had fractures to her head and face,” Beck said Thursday.
Jasper has not been booked into the Yuba County Jail.
Toxicology tests will determine if Roguski had also been drinking, the Yuba County Coroner’s Office said.
Sutter County Sheriff’s Lt. Damon Gil said test results could take several weeks for the state Department of Justice to process.
The crash occurred around 11:40 p.m. on McGanney Lane near Highway 20, west of Penn Valley.
Jasper was driving a 1999 Ford Mustang west on Highway 20 near McGanney Lane around 55 mph when, “due to her high level of intoxication,” she let her car drift too far to the right as she approached a left hand curve in the roadway, the CHP said.
Tires left the pavement and the driver steered back to the left abruptly, causing her to lose control. The car skidded across both traffic lanes and collided head-on into a rock wall on the south side of the road.
The car spun around to the right, and the rear of the vehicle struck the rock and slid back across both lanes, coming to rest on the north side of the road on the westbound shoulder, according to the CHP.
Neither person was wearing a seat belt.
It was not immediately clear where the couple was headed at the time of the crash.
“It’s still under investigation, and it could be quite a lengthy investigation,” Beck said.
Suspected blood-alcohol levels were not available, but the CHP said alcohol was a factor in the fatal collision.
Sutter County Undersheriff Jeff Pierce said Roguski was hired as a reserve deputy in December 2009 and was sworn in as a full sheriff’s deputy July 14. Roguski was in the department’s field training program.
Rob Parsons is a reporter with the Marysville Appeal-Democrat. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.